I need experienced eyes to review my Clickbank stats - No Clickbank conspiracy theory

19 replies
First off, this is not another thread about Clickbank commission shaving. I personally don't believe in any of that nonsense. However, I do believe some vendors could be cheating the affiliates of their hard earned commissions and I would like to put up my Clickbank stats to get the opinion of the more experienced marketers here at Warrior.

This is the statistic for a single product and not my total figures for Clickbank. None of the hops originate from email marketing.
2832 Hops in 15 days (188 hops/day)
36 Initial sales (1 sale for every 78.6 hops)
1 Refund (Adjusted sale/hops = 1 sale for every 81 hops)

The next 8 days
1671 Hops in 8 days (208 hops/day)
1 Initial sales (1 sale for every 1671 hops)
0 Refund

All the hops originate from my blog and the blog receives 90% of its traffic from organic searches. So they are not exactly the very warm traffic from a list, but presold to a degree, yes. I don't know about you, but all I can think of when I look those numbers is that I'm probably getting cheated from the vendor. So I would like to get the opinions of the more experienced marketers here. Do you think the vendor is stealing my commissions? Or could it possibly be a long dry-spell? Thanks for your time Warriors.
#clickbank #conspiracy #experienced #eyes #review #stats #theory
  • Profile picture of the author Alexandre Valois
    Without pointing fingers, there are many unknown factors to consider.

    When was you data collected? How does the market behave? Is the product seasonal? Who buys and when? Have you changed anything to your traffic funnel?

    It's easy to blame a vendor for ripping you off, it's a lot harder to figure out where we go wrong
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Banned
      Clearly, the disparity in the numbers is enormously statistically significant and it's virtually impossible for those to be "chance findings". And clearly you've excluded seasonal factors if the time-periods were immediately adjacent.

      Why do you suspect that you're "probably" getting cheated by the vendor, rather than simply that Clickbank's affiliate tracking is screwed up again with nobody having any intention of doing anything dishonest at all?

      Are you promoting a product with an opt-in on the sales page?
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      • Profile picture of the author Alexandre Valois
        Originally Posted by Alexa Smith View Post

        Clearly, the disparity in the numbers is enormously statistically significant and it's virtually impossible for those to be "chance findings". And clearly you've excluded seasonal factors if the time-periods were immediately adjacent.

        Why do you suspect that one possible explanation is that the vendor is somehow doing something amiss?

        Are you promoting a product with an opt-in on the sales page?
        Alexa, adjacent dates may not necessarily mean anything. In some markets sales will skyrocket early in the month for example, then dwindle for the next 2-3 weeks until the next cycle begins, so a 3 week period doesn't really tell us anything. Accurate data should be collected over a 12-month period at least to have any significance. But once again, without knowing more about all the variables in play, no one can provide any kind of valuable answer to the apparent problem.
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        • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
          Banned
          Originally Posted by Alexandre Valois View Post

          Alexa, adjacent dates may not necessarily mean anything.
          Unless they're adjacent dates pre-Christmas and post-Christmas, or something similar, it would appear to be fair to say, over a sample this size, that we've probably excluded "seasonal factors". Which was all I said about it.

          I do agree with you, Alexandre, that without knowing more about all the variables in play, no one can provide any kind of valuable answer to the apparent problem. That was why I asked a question to elicit a further variable.

          Specifically, as I said, I'm confused about why the OP should think it "probable" that he's being cheated by the vendor. (Unless there's an opt-in there, of course, in which case I'd be concerned about that, too.)
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    • Profile picture of the author ajm5050
      Thanks for your reply Alexandre. You are right about the unknown factors and that is why I seek the opinion of the more experienced marketers. Now to answer some of the unknown factors you mention and I will have to be somewhat discreet to protect the vendor. Let me try to answer them.

      When was you data collected?
      The data were collected over the past 23 days. (Not including today)

      How does the market behave? Is the product seasonal?
      The market for this, at least as far as the seasonal search trend goes, it is very consistent throughout the year. There were 3 months spike last year for the related searches for this product, but it wasn’t a drastic increase.

      Who buys and when?
      Both men and women and the product would fall in the evergreen product segment.

      Have you changed anything to your traffic funnel?
      For the past 30 days my site’s traffic number has been pretty steady. It’s ranking for pretty much the same key phrases that it has ranked for and there weren’t big changes. The only notable changes were exchanging #1 spot with yahoo answers for couple of key phrases that total in 4900 searches/month. Yahoo answers took one of my #1 spot and I took #1 spot from yahoo answers for another key phrase.
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  • Profile picture of the author allenjohn
    Defo something up. Have you been through the sales funnel recently to test what actually happens? Regards Allen
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  • Profile picture of the author JamesGw
    I've had conversion rates like that happen all the time. It sometimes has to do with a vendor changing their page. My conversions dropped terribly once a bunch of my vendors started using those sales videos.
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  • Profile picture of the author ajm5050
    Originally Posted by Alexa Smith

    Why do you suspect that one possible explanation is that the vendor is somehow doing something amiss, rather than simply that Clickbank's affiliate tracking is screwed up again with nobody having any intention of doing anything dishonest at all?
    That is a fair counter argument Alexa. I haven't thought of Clickbank screwing up the affiliate tracking, because quite frankly I haven't seen that many people complain about it as much recently. I remember just few years ago those discussions were a plenty in all the IM forums. In any case, I suppose clickbank could be the one to blame after all, but as you say, without any intention of doing anything dishonest. It's really frustrating when all your hard work goes into the drain like this.

    By the way, the sales page for the product in question does not use the opt-in page. But I've been reading up a little on how some vendors were caught stealing commissions and the opt-in wasn't the only way they did it. I should also mention though, I'm sure those dishonest vendors are the small minorities among the many honest vendors.
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Banned
      Originally Posted by ajm5050 View Post

      I haven't thought of Clickbank screwing up the affiliate tracking, because quite frankly I haven't seen that many people complain about it as much recently.
      No, I agree. I also think there's probably been a lot less of that happening in the last year than in the year before it, for example.

      Originally Posted by ajm5050 View Post

      the sales page for the product in question does not use the opt-in page. But I've been reading up a little on how some vendors were caught stealing commissions and the opt-in wasn't the only way they did it.
      Yes, this is true: it's not the only way they can do it, though I do think it's by far the commonest. And to be fair to vendors, they're not "stealing" if it's through an opt-in: they are actually allowed (by Clickbank) to do that (unfortunately but understandably).

      So, I hear you, and can't help. But personally, I would switch immediately to an alternate affiliate account (a pain to have to do, but you'll be pleased if it "works"). If that helps, then it's clearly Clickbank's tracking, as so often seen a while ago.
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      • Profile picture of the author ajm5050
        Thanks everyone for all your help and especially you, Alexa. I'm just going to have switch to an alternate Clickbank account and see what happens. Thanks again guys.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kelly Verge
      Originally Posted by ajm5050 View Post

      That is a fair counter argument Alexa. I haven't thought of Clickbank screwing up the affiliate tracking, because quite frankly I haven't seen that many people complain about it as much recently.
      It happened to me a couple of weeks ago. I sent an email to CB and things "mysteriously" started working again later that day. No word from CB about the cause (big surprise there).

      It's still happening to people, perhaps not as frequently as in the past though.
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      • Profile picture of the author Neil Macks
        I would try buying the item yourself through your affiliate link using a friend's credit card and see if you get given the commission.
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  • Profile picture of the author ajm5050
    Order page impression for the first 15 days = 141 (submit count = 48)

    Order page impression for the next 8 days = 33 (submit count = 1)

    If Clickbank has screwed up with their affiliate tracking, I doubt these numbers are reliable. The same could be said as well if the vendor is messing with me. I'm actually done promoting other people's product. I'm looking into producing my own product because frankly I'm tired of these inconsistencies. This isn't the first time something like this has happened to me and at least if my products aren't producing results, I only have myself to blame .
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  • Profile picture of the author ajm5050
    I don't know if you guys are still following this thread, but I thought it was worth passing along this information.

    So in the past, I saw all these threads about Clickbank failing to track affiliate sales and as soon as you sent them a complaint message, the sales would start coming again.

    I sent a complaint message to Clickbank on the same day that I posted this thread. I was going to remove all the Clickbank links from my site, but then after remembering about what the complaint emails had done for some, I thought I'd run a test. I left the links and banners of the product in question intact.

    Today, just one day after the complaint, I see 3 sales. Coincidence? Read what I had wrote initially and I think you would be on the same page as me. What Alexa and many others suspected was right, Clickbank screws up their tracking a lot more than you think. You do the work, the vendor gets the full credit for the sale, Clickbank still get their share, and you get screwed.

    If you have a sizable number hops over a reasonable amount of time and if you are able to detect clear inconsistencies in sales, don't doubt yourself, make the complaint guys. Imagine how much money you can lose in a year because of their incompetence. It doesn't matter if you are wrong, you lose nothing by making sure you are getting your fair share.
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Banned
      Originally Posted by ajm5050 View Post

      Today, just one day after the complaint, I see 3 sales. Coincidence? Read what I had wrote initially and I think you would be on the same page as me. What Alexa and many others suspected was right, Clickbank screws up their tracking a lot more than you think. You do the work, the vendor gets the full credit for the sale, Clickbank still get their share, and you get screwed.
      Thanks for the update, AJM.

      I'm very glad you've apparently sorted the problem out, now ... and hope others in trouble will read your posts and take notice!
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  • Profile picture of the author Wizard38
    Hello,
    please, look at my Clickbank stats (for the last two weeks):

    2,641 Hops,
    195 Order Form Impressions,
    65 Order Form Submits (by prospective customers from the US, Canada, Australia,
    Ireland and Sweden)

    1 sale only.

    Very weird...

    I contacted Clickbank support. Here is their reply:


    "Hello, Thank you for your inquiry! Order Form Submits are not the same thing as a sale. There are several reasons that an order form submit may not turn into an order including (1) the customer didn?t enter all the fields correctly and (2) the customer?s method of payment was declined. When a customer doesn?t enter the fields correctly, which happens more often, our order form is designed to help customers to enter the correct information as efficiently as possible."
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Wizard38 View Post

      65 Order Form Submits (by prospective customers from the US, Canada, Australia,
      Ireland and Sweden)

      1 sale only.

      Very weird...
      I'm afraid 1 sale from 65 order-form submissions of international customers is worse than just "very weird".

      Originally Posted by Wizard38 View Post

      I contacted Clickbank support. Here is their reply: ...
      ...
      It's quite extraordinary that they're still pasting in the identical paragraph they were using years ago in response to inquiries on this subject, regardless of the numbers and circumstances involved. I really thought their customer service had improved, since then. They've certainly been trying to convince people that it has. And then something like that comes along, making you wonder if everything they've said to people about "acknowledging and taking action over the much-needed improvements in their customer service" was all a bluff!!? :rolleyes:

      Clearly you're losing sales.

      From 65 order-form submissions, I'd expect nearly 60 sales, myself.

      I urge you to open a new ClickBank account, and switch all your hoplinks over to it, as and where necessary. And the sooner the better. You'll find this discussion helpful (and there's a whole succession of threads linked to - one from another - in which you can read the accounts of many Warriors who have solved this problem only in that way): http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...ml#post5929023
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      • Profile picture of the author Wizard38
        Thank you, Alexa Smith.
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